With only five-games remaining in the 2011-12 season each contest for the Phoenix Coyotes takes on greater significance as they try to make the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the third straight season. Squaring off against the San Jose Sharks, at Jobing.com Arena, Radim Vrbata and Mike Smith stepped up their respective games and the Coyotes came away with a 2-0 victory. Smith stopped all 38-shots for the shutout and Vrbata scored both of the Coyotes’ goals.
“We’ve seen what we can do from behind, but obviously we’re a better hockey team when we have the lead,” Smith said. “… We played our style of play and made them earn everything they got and luckily didn’t get any back.”
Vrbata scored his 31st and 32nd goals in the win. He recently missed four out of the last five games due to an allergic reaction to penicillin.
“Even the games I played I was just trying to get through the games,” Vrbata said. “I didn’t feel like I had any energy to contribute as I would like. Now it seems like, hopefully, it’s under control. I was good enough to go tonight and I’m glad I could help.”
Currently the Coyotes are in seventh place in the Western Conference, with a 38-27-13 record and 89 points. They are one-point ahead of the Los Angeles Kings and San Jose Sharks. Due to playing one less game than the Sharks, the Kings are currently in eighth place in the Western Conference.
The Coyotes next game is on March 31st against the Anaheim Ducks at Jobing.com Arena. The Ducks are in 12th place in the Western Conference.